LBSU rallies to top UC Santa Barbara in 3-2 comeback win
March 2, 2012
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - The eighth-ranked Long Beach State men's volleyball team rallied from a 2-0 deficit to defeat No. 11 UC Santa Barbara, 22-25, 20-25, 25-21, 25-19, 15-13, Friday evening at Rob Gym.
LBSU improved to 9-8 overall and 5-7 in Mountain Pacific Sports Federation action, while UCSB dropped to 5-11, 3-9 MPSF.
Senior Jim Baughman led the way with a season-high 22 kills, eight digs, five blocks and four service aces. Junior Trevor Crabb added 10 kills and seven digs, while classmate Colten Echave finished with eight kills and a .429 hitting percentage.
It was a back-and-forth affair early in the first set with nine tie scores. The 49ers took their first lead at 7-6 following a kill by Baughman, but UC Santa Barbara pulled ahead for good when it scored three unanswered points to go up, 13-10. The Gauchos eventually owned a 21-17 advantage and was able to hold on for the 25-22 win.
UCSB kept the momentum in set two, taking an early 11-8 lead on a kill from Dylan Davis. The Gauchos stayed out front and went up by five at 23-18. After back-to-back kills from Echave and Brad Hemmerling closed the gap to three, UC Santa Barbara proceeded to score the next two points to prevail, 25-20.
In a 2-0 hole, Long Beach State came storming back as it led wire-to-wire in the third stanza. The 49ers opened the set with three straight points and went on top, 8-4, following consecutive kills from Crabb. UCSB came back within one, but LBSU then used a 5-2 spurt, capped by a Baughman kill, to go up, 20-16. The 49ers didn't look back from there as another kill from Baughman ended it at 25-21.
In the fourth frame, the 49ers took a 12-6 lead on a double block by Jeff Ornee and Baughman. The Gauchos eventually cut the deficit to 20-18, but Long Beach State responded with a 5-1 run, capped by a Hemmerling kill, to come away with the 25-19 victory.
Long Beach State continued to roll in the decisive fifth set, pulling ahead 8-3 after a kill from Echave. The Gauchos then answered with three unanswered points, forcing LBSU to call a timeout. The 49ers took advantage of the break in action as they regrouped and held match point at 14-9. UC Santa Barbara made it interesting, coming within one before Trevor Crabb's 10th kill closed it out at 15-13.
Dylan Davis paced UC Santa Barbara with 17 kills and nine blocks, while Miles Evans finished with 10 kills and a match-high 17 digs.
Long Beach State takes a break from MPSF action next weekend when it hosts the Active Ankle Tournament, March 9-10. The 49ers will face IPFW on Friday and Lewis on Saturday, with both matches starting at 7 p.m. at the Walter Pyramid.